Evolution and Human Behavior
The simple economic approach to human behavior is inconsistent with many human actions. Firstly we engage in very considerable charitable gifts to strangers, people who are not related to us. We also risk our lives, or some of us do, sometimes for the benefit of collective entities like nations. This is not only a deviation from simple maximization for the individual and hence uneconomic, but would appear to contradict the general principles of evolution. At first glance these traits should have been selected out. Looking back to primitive times it can be seen that both of these activities had evolutionary value then and hence have been preserved, although maybe they will be eliminated after a number of generations of modern society. Hamiltonian altruism led to gifts to people who were members of tribal groups and to neighboring tribes. With the improvement in communication, these gifts, albeit small gifts, are much more widely distributed. The preservation of the territory of a tribe also had evolutionary value and hence the willingness of individuals to take risk to that end. Copyright Kluwer Academic Publishers 2002
If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
Volume (Year): 4 (2002)
Issue (Month): 2 (May)
|Contact details of provider:|| Web page: http://www.springer.com|
|Order Information:||Web: http://www.springer.com/economics/environmental/journal/10818/PS2|
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:kap:jbioec:v:4:y:2002:i:2:p:99-107. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Sonal Shukla)or (Rebekah McClure)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.